The Mind’s Garden

Ever seen those funny comparison posts on social media? The ones where the super fit couple workout, barely breaking a sweat, while the average Joe Schmoes face-plant trying to do the Flying Warrior yoga pose.
They make you smile or laugh, right?
But then you realize how true the post really is when it comes to your life. And so, you let out a quiet sigh into your overpriced coffee, internally frowning at how the worlds expectations dramatically differ from your reality.
At least, that’s how it goes for me.

I’ve had to tell myself not to compare me to others. Your parents tell you it. Your friends tell you it. The world tries to tell you it. Yet, unfortunately, that never works. It’s been instilled in us from a young age to compete. We compete to survive. And no matter how much society progresses, no matter how many times the world resets, it’s in our DNA to survive. By any means.
And yeah, that sounds pessimistic. Clearly, I’m not at that stage in life where I can say “I give no shits.” Sometimes, I like to think I am. Sometimes I like to think I really don’t care what others lives look like compared to mine. In ways, it’s true. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I am not among my fellow alumni who have graduated four year colleges right after high school. I’m alright with taking my time trying to figure out what I’m doing with my life.
I’m mostly alright with it.

Photo by Nikoline Arns on Unsplash

There’s this seed of doubt inside me. It was planted at a very young age and has only wrapped its ugly vines around my security and sanity. It strangles me on a daily basis. It’s this terrible flower that’s bloomed into the dark corners of my mind. Its thorns tear at my flesh, opening me up, leaving me susceptible to the cruelties of the world.
And then there’s this stubborn little girl, stars in her eyes, hope in her smile. She grits her teeth, digging up those twisted, ugly roots. She wipes sweat from her brows, chin up in the air, and proclaims “I did it!”

And it’s that part of me that says “Who cares what others look like?” Or “Why does it matter what they have?”
It doesn’t matter what others look like. It doesn’t matter that I don’t have my bachelors yet. It doesn’t matter that I won’t be getting married later this year. It doesn’t matter that my personal schedule has been set behind.

It. Doesn’t. Matter.

I have to keep telling myself this. I have to believe in myself.
Believe that I will end up where I’m meant to be.
I have to have faith.

That’s easier said than done.
But it can be done.

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